Story:Turkey's president to visit KSA; 01-06-2022;
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to visit Saudi Arabia, first time since 2018;
• Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will visit Saudi Arabia next month as part of efforts by Ankara and Riyadh to normalize the ties between the two states.
• This trip would be significant as it will be the first since 2018, after the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul.
• The trip will focus on bilateral trade that was unofficially disturbed following the murder of Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, in 2018.
•The two countries were also at odds in Saudi Arabia’s dispute with Qatar.
• Relations between the two countries have also been strained by other conflicts in the region, including the wars in Syria and Libya.
Build up for the visit:
Earlier last year in April and May 2021, the President of Turkey Erdoğan and Saudi king Salman had discussed bilateral relationship.
Turkey’s foreign minister also led the delegation to Saudi Arabia where he led talks with his counterpart, turkey has also been in negotiations with Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. In an attempt to thaw ties and maximize cooperation with Gulf countries.
What did Tayyip Erdoğan said about the upcoming visit:
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said he will visit Saudi Arabia, “They expect me in February. They made a promise and I will pay a visit to Saudi Arabia in February,” Erdogan said in a video posted on social media on Monday.
Why the relations went sorrow to worse between Saudi and Turkey:
Turkey and its regional neighbors, specially the Saudi Arabia, has historically shared a sorrow relationship with each other that goes from era of Ottoman Empire.
While in recent years, the two rivals have been on the opposite sides of various conflicts in the region, including the wars in Syria and Libya.
Turkey supported Qatar when Saudi and regional allies put a blockade on Qatar, over allegations of supporting terrorism.
The Turkey and UAE were at opposite side when the coup of Egypt took place.
The Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was brutally murdered in Istanbul in 2018, and the allegation were made on the Saudi prince Bin Salman.
Worsened relationship after the killing of Khashoggi:
The Turkey and Saudi Arabia share even worsened relationship after the killing of Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018.
The murder was said to be pre-planned, and it was so precisely done by well-trained killers that Khashoggi’s remains have never been found.
Erdoğan at the time blamed senior Saudi officials, though he never named Crown Prince Mohamed. The killing made headlines around the world, and a trial of several Saudi defendants is currently under way in Turkey.
It is said that the Saudi Arabia even sought to informally put pressure on the Turkish economy. There were even calls for Saudis to avoid visiting Turkey and purchasing property there, while Turkish exporters complained of delays at Saudi customs in 2020, according to a report by Al Jazeera .
Turkey's big plan to sought good relationship with regional rivals:
In the past two years, Turkey looked quite keen to repair ties with regional rivals including Egypt and Saudi Arabia, while Turkey has managed to put relationship between Ankara and the United Arab Emirates on the track.
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed was in Ankara last November, it was a first high-level visit to Turkey from Abu Dhabi since 2012, during which the United Arab Emirates announced billions of dollars of investments in Turkey.
Last May, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was in Saudi Arabia for the first time since Khashoggi’s murder, signalling the end of the long diplomatic winter between the two countries, with both sides announcing at the time that they hoped to repair ties, reported Al Jazeera.
The visit to Saudi Arabia would be even further crucial for Turkey as it is undergoing another currency crisis, same as of 2018. The current crisis is said to be caused by Erdoğan’s unconventional economic policies.